Skip to Main Content
U.S. Forest Service
Caring for the land and serving people

United States Department of Agriculture

Home > Search > Publication Information

  1. Share via EmailShare on FacebookShare on LinkedInShare on Twitter
    Dislike this pubLike this pub


    Effects of wind velocity and slope on fire spread rate and flame length were examined. Fuel beds of vertical sticks (13.97 cm x 0.455 cm x 0.1 10 cm) and coarse excelsior were burned in an open-topped tilting wind tunnel. Mean fuel moisture content of sticks and excelsior was 11% and 12%, respectively. Mean surface area to volume ratio was 23 cm-! Five slopes (negative, positive, none) were combined with five wind velocities (heading, backing, none). Spread rate was measured with thermocouples; flame length was estimated from video imagery. Mean spread rate ranged from 0.001 to 0.06 m/s. Spread rate of downslope heading fires exceeded spread rate of no-wind/no-slope fires. Mean flame length ranged from 0.08 to 1.69 m; 0.25 m was the maximum observed for most backing fires. Increased fuel moisture reduced spread rate and flame length. Data indicate that the current formulation of an empirical wildland fire spread model is inappropriate.

    Publication Notes

    • You may send email to to request a hard copy of this publication.
    • (Please specify exactly which publication you are requesting and your mailing address.)
    • We recommend that you also print this page and attach it to the printout of the article, to retain the full citation information.
    • This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.


    Weise, D.R.; Biging, G.S. 1994. Effects of wind velocity and slope on fire behavior. In: Takashi Kashiwagi, ed. 1994. Fire Safety Science Proceedings of the Fourth International Symposium. Intl. Assoc. for Fire Safety Science, Boston, MA: pp: 1041-1051.


    Google Scholar


    flame length, spread rate

    Related Search

    XML: View XML
Show More
Show Fewer
Jump to Top of Page